Doublesix, a UK based developer is almost ready to ship their upcoming title All Zombies Must Die, the spiritual successor to Burn Zombie Burn and last week I had the privilege of trying it out with Lead Designer, David Dow.
The game plays very much like Burn Zombie Burn except that it now has this light RPG element to it along with a leveling up for your characters as well as a crafting system that allows for some unique weapons. For those haven’t played BZB, it revolved around a character named Bruce –who was somewhat of a mix between Bruce Campbell and Elvis Presely– fighting off a bunch of zombies by burning them and later using different weapons to finish the job for extra points.
The main mechanic isn’t gone in this game but it does differ from the previous. For starters, there are four unique characters with a unique type of elemental status effect that their attacks will apply on the zombies, fire, sonic, shock and radioactivity. When fighting zombies, each status effect adds a game modifier that could potentially make the zombies stronger or give them more of a chance to drop a cool power up like a katana or laser blaster.
This status mechanic definitely evolved from the idea of fire being a score multiplier that was featured in Burn Zombie Burn and it seriously makes playing the game more intense. There will also be plenty of opportunities for you to combine different status effects on the zombies that could possibly mutate the zombies to become even more powerful.
At the start you play as Jack, the Gamer, who is fighting his way through a city filled with zombies, trying to prove to people that he’s in a video game while everyone else is either getting killed or standing their ground. Later on you’ll be able to play as 4 other characters, Jack’s Ex, Brian the Scientist, Luxo an alien who says “dude” a lot because he learned to speak English from comics and The Big Lebowski and lastly as the military man, who was put in to be a sort of a placeholder until you unlock the other main characters by progressing through the story.
In All Zombies Must Die, each character starts off in their default class which you can later change as you level up. Jack starts off in the Gamer class, which mean he spawns right up with a shotgun, while the other characters will have their own default class with their own spawn loadout. Also, as you level you will be able to attain points to spread out into your attributes, just like a full-fledged real RPG!
There are about nine levels that you roam around killing the undead in, and they are all connected together in a urban surrounding. When traveling through each section, you will be able to see yourself on a map and pick where you want to go, later revisiting some of the sections to complete your quests. Once you clear a certain area of zombies, you can turn that level that you’ve cleared into your base of operations where you can set up shop, change your class, your loadout and even craft new weapons.
From the very little time I had to play, I can tell you that I’m certainly looking forward to getting my hands on the final build later this year, even though I’m quite saddened there will be no online co-op. I guess it’s to encourage people to call their buddies over, drink a few beers and relive the days of playing Zombies Ate My Neighbors. *sigh* I could never get past that big baby.
Be on the lookout for All Zombies Must Die! In the fall on PC, PSN, and XBLA.